Tuesday, October 16, 2007

DAY 9: Day off in Pemberton

0 km, warm, a bit cloudy

I was determined to rest as much as possible today to regain strength after a rather taxing week. I had a lie-in until around 0730 and made porridge and coffee just outside the tent without having to leave it. The Thermarest chair (converts mattress to chair) is excellent for sitting around in and only takes seconds to put together.
I strolled the half-km or so to the ‘railway station’ to wait for the tram excursion. This is an excellent way to see and learn about the local trees and plants and area in general in comfort ($18). The trip takes you out through forest and over wooden creek bridges for some 10 km under the expert guidance of the driver and former bushman. We also saw a large flock of wild emus down by the river (WA turkey as our guide called them).
After a nice pastie,donut and latte lunch in the local bakery I had a chat with a 70-year old Brisbane man and his wife here on a mountain biking holiday. He also runs tours to New Zealand for a living - nice work, all expenses paid. What a fit and active guy too. I have to repeat I very much like the small Australian towns like Pemberton and Nannup - I expect to see much more of the likes on the route I take from Melbourne north - bypassing Sydney well inland, then heading for Brisbane cross-country via Canberra. The people are so friendly and welcoming, and the shops and cafes are such good value and high quality compared to the coastal towns, as far as I can see.
I went to the YHA to use the internet but no uploads so no go. Nothing else open today either.

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